Do 4 former KC Royals players offer enough to be considered this offseason?
If Kansas City fans remember Brett Eibner for anything significant, it’s the 3-2, two-out, bottom of the ninth inning single he slashed in his second big league game to break a 7-7 tie and walk off the White Sox in 2016.
But despite that exciting effort, Eibner was gone before his rookie season ended, dealt to the A’s at the trade deadline for Billy Burns. Oakland sent him to the Dodgers that winter, who converted him to a pitcher, but Tommy John surgery ruined his early mound efforts and he didn’t play again until 2020. He pitched three times for Miami that year, going 0-0 with a 13.50 ERA.
Eibner spent most of 2021 on the Injured List at Jacksonville, Miami’s Triple-A affiliate, and elected free agency earlier this week. He’s 2-4 with a respectable 2.57 ERA in 22 minor league appearances, but that shouldn’t be sufficient for the Royals, who are loaded with young pitching prospects.
Three other former Royals also shouldn’t draw KC’s interest. Utility infielder Matt Reynolds, a career .212 hitter, had his chance with the club in 2020, but didn’t get called up until September and appeared in only three games. Humberto Arteaga, another utility man, played 41 games for the KC Royals in 2019, but slashed a disturbing .197/.258/.230 and has been in just one big league game since. And because he’s a catcher, the club doesn’t have room for Francisco Peña.